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  1. #1
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    Powell Butte Trail Access Emergency

    Hi there,

    While reading the general thread about Powell Butte (Powell Butte , especially reply #42), I was alarmed to read that some of the best new trails in the park are going to be closed to bikes! Read on for details, or skip to the bottom for info about the next meeting of Friends of Powell Butte, at which you can register your preference for more multi-use trails.

    Specifically, Wildhorse and Fernwood are the two tightest, twistiest trails, and they're slated to be closed. Also slated for closure to bikes is the Dogwood loop (a wide trail very suitable for novices) and Hawthorn, an excellent descent from the meadow.

    I had a brief chat with a board member of Friends of Powell Butte yesterday, and she expressed that the citizen committee had lots of back and forth about which trails would be open, but that the group had settled on having all the trails multi-use except one (and I think that was Hawthorn, or possibly Dogwood).

    I told her what I'd read online about the four trails closing to bikes and this was the first she'd heard about it. When a city department takes this kind of step without notifying (much less consulting) the relevant citizen advocacy organizations (like Friends or NWTA), the city is subverting Portland's open, transparent form of government.

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    There will be a meeting at 6:30pm at Powell Butte Visitor's Center this Thursday. I highly encourage mtb riders to attend and respectfully advocate for open trails.

    I'll be out of town at a wedding, so I wrote a letter to several people (Commissioner Fritz, Director Abbate, the Friends, and two NWTA trail reps) registering my disapproval of the closures. You can find that letter on the above linked post on MTBR.

    Thanks for reading, and Free Powell Butte!
    Last edited by charley289; 07-14-2014 at 09:01 AM. Reason: hadn't finished it yet, and apparently the return key posts???

  2. #2
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    Good luck with the good fight! PB is no longer on my radar, having moved to Hood River ages ago, but it is where I started riding mtbs, and did so for over 10 years. A small, but great, inner city gem!

    An interesting and apparently long-ignored factoid is that the person who originally donated the land to the city supposedly stipulated that it remain open to bikes AND DIRT BIKES.

    Of course, that could be urban myth, but when I started riding there in 1988, dirt bikes were definitely present and accounted for (but that quickly ended).
    The drive towards achievement and success is the motive power of civilization.

  3. #3
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    Good to know. Maybe someone should ask the city to see the deed?

  4. #4
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    Have you contacted someone at COTA about this?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by sketchbook View Post
    Have you contacted someone at COTA about this?

    Central Oregon Trail Alliance? This is in the city of Portland, not sure that even as rad as they are COTA will be of any help.

  6. #6
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    Howdy Folks,

    This just came through my email box and we at the NWTA are following up to clarify some of these issues. Please feel free to get in touch at the email below and I will post an update when we here where things are.

    Tyler
    Advocacy Chair, NWTA

  7. #7
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    This is why we really need every mountain biker in the Portland Metro to be an NWTA member, so we can reach the magic 1000 number which brings a lot more political clout, AND come out to public meetings.

    I appreciate the trails I ride so much more now that I have an idea of the painstaking process that they take.

    Make sure that you're signed up for the NWTA newsletter and connect via Facebook or Twitter so that you stay in the loop.

    Dmitriy | NWTA Volunteer Director

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigdog View Post
    Central Oregon Trail Alliance? This is in the city of Portland, not sure that even as rad as they are COTA will be of any help.
    We could write a letter of support if you think that might help...
    "“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view." - Edward Abbey

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by sans soucie View Post
    We could write a letter of support if you think that might help...
    That would be awesome, appreciate all that you guys do for sure

  10. #10
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    Sorry. There is a Powel Butte NE of Bend. I figured that's the one you were speaking of. It has some trails on it from what I have been told.

    Good luck with the fight! Portland needs more trails!
    Last edited by sketchbook; 07-17-2014 at 07:56 PM.

  11. #11
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    Until they put armed officers up there to control all the dogs off the leash, the mounds of horse crap that are on the trails and segregate the hikers from certain trails I will ride all of them until then

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by THOE View Post
    Until they put armed officers up there to control all the dogs off the leash, the mounds of horse crap that are on the trails and segregate the hikers from certain trails I will ride all of them until then
    This! The last time I rode there (been riding there off/on since the early/mid 90's), I spent a fair amount of time cleaning dog and horse dung from my drivetrain and rest of bike. All the said trails to be closed were built recently by mtb trail builders/contractors for better drainage control and to be more suitable for bikes. Now they want to shut them down for us, where hikers have exclusive rights for the trails at nearby Mt. Talbert Nature Park and Forest Park. This is whacked.
    Ride On!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgusta View Post
    This! The last time I rode there (been riding there off/on since the early/mid 90's), I spent a fair amount of time cleaning dog and horse dung from my drivetrain and rest of bike. All the said trails to be closed were built recently by mtb trail builders/contractors for better drainage control and to be more suitable for bikes. Now they want to shut them down for us, where hikers have exclusive rights for the trails at nearby Mt. Talbert Nature Park and Forest Park. This is whacked.
    That's just insane! Like you said, the contractor (Treadworks, IIRC) built those trails specifically for MTB, w/ hikers and bikers and nature in mind. To now disallow MTB seems crazy.
    Not to mention, PDX needs *more* access, not less. The more trails that get shut down, the more poaching there will be.
    Hurry up and get this straightened out, Portland, so I can move back.

    Portlander-in-exile,
    Russ R

  14. #14
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    Lots of nice homes for sale in North Bonneville which puts you a half hour from Hood River & 45 minutes from PDX. Why live in a city that only likes cyclists who wear skinny jeans & fedoras when the Gorge is so close?

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